DUI & Child Endangerment: Everything You Need To Know

Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol can have serious consequences, but a DUI charge with a child in the vehicle can be downright life-altering. If arrested for DUI with someone under the age of 15 in the vehicle, you could face supplemental charges of child endangerment. As you can imagine, child endangerment charges can have a major impact on your future, and may result in a criminal record, costly fees, and the loss of certain rights. To help shed light on this serious crime, we’ve outlined the potential charges, legal penalties, and lasting repercussions.

What is a DUI with Child Endangerment?

DUI & Child Endangerment Everything You Need To KnowA DUI charge applies to anyone suspected of driving a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If a child under the age of 15 was in the vehicle at the time of the driver’s arrest, they may face additional charges of child endangerment. More than 40 states recognize these charges, which are referred to as either DUI child endangerment or drunk driving with a child in the car.

The Penalties for DUI & Child Endangerment

If charged with DUI child endangerment, you could face lasting damage to your finances, your career, and your reputation. The law cracks down hard on those suspected of putting children in harm’s way, and if the situation was especially dangerous, or if the child experienced any harm, the charges can be even steeper.

According to WV Code Section 17C-5-2(k), first offense-child endangerment in West Virginia can result in the following repercussions:

  • Jail time

    • Between 48 hours and 12 months

  • Between $200 and $1,000 in legal fees

  • 12-month driver’s license suspension

    • Or a 2-month suspension with the installation of an ignition interlock device for at least 10 months

  • Mandatory enrollment in the West Virginia Safety and Treatment Program

Are you facing DUI child endangerment charges? Our experienced team is here to help. We can use our knowledge and resources to stand up for your rights and protect your future.

Call (304) 461-6000 today to discuss your case with our team at The Wagner Law Firm.